Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Analysis

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In Charles Kernaghan’s video titled, “Triangle Shirtwaist Fire: The Race to the Bottom”, he tells of the horrific events of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire that occurred in New York in 1911. Kernaghan tells the story of the fire that resulted in the deaths of 146 people, mostly young women, because the main door was blocked by the fire and the fire exit was locked to prevent workers from sneaking out, stealing, or letting in union organizers (00:00:23-00:0:51). The outrage over the murder of these 146 workers was so great that 100,000 people marched in the funeral procession and another 400,000 lined the streets with the plea of, “Who was going to protect the working girl?” (00:01:24-00:01:41). The people of New York recognized the wrong doing…show more content…
By including labour standards within agreements, not only do workers receive better treatment and pay, but they are also able to better contribute to their country’s economy, thereby increasing the stability of the global economy. Due to global interdependency, which is “mutual dependence at a global level” (“Global Interdependence.”), the economy of one country can affect the economy of another country. If, for example, Canada experiences an economic downturn and consumption levels fall, then the countries producing the goods Canada imports, will also experience a downturn. Consequently, it is important for countries to remain economically stable so that they can experience periods of controlled economic growth and decline that will not devastate the rest of the world. Enforcing specific labour standards can help this economic stability through protecting workers, avoiding strikes, and paying the people more money. In turn, workers will not only better their quality of life, but will also boost their country’s economy through spending. As suggested by the International Labour Organization, “…international labour standards are an essential component in the international framework for ensuring that the growth of the global economy provides benefits to all” (“Introduction to International Labour Standards.”). International labour standards will provide a more equal distribution of wealth as well as indirectly boost the global economy through stabilizing individual economies. In conclusion, regulatory labour laws will not inhibit the growth and development of the global economy, despite the claims made by companies presented in Kernaghan’s video. Rather, by including these laws in international trade agreements, we have the potential of improving economies worldwide. Instead of continuing our “Race to the Bottom”, the world can reignite a race to the top by valuing humanity across
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